At, National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission NCDRC
By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE V.K. JAIN
By, PRESIDING MEMBER
For the Petitioner: Bharat Sood , Advocate. For the Respondent: Jaimini Tiwari, Advocate.
The respondent / complainant was engaged the services of the petitioner company for obtaining enrolment in the Hotel Management Programme of a Foreign University and submitted the requisite documents, besides paying the requisite admission fee. He was to fly out of Country on 22.2.2017 to attend the KES College in Nicosia Cyprus. The case of the complainant is that since the petitioner company did not return his passport having misplaced the same, he could not fly out of India. The fee however, was refunded to him by the concerned college. Alleging deficiency on the part of the petitioner in rendering services to him by misplacing his passport, the complainant approached the concerned District Forum by way of a consumer complaint.
2. The complaint was resisted by the petitioner, which inter-alia claimed in its reply that the complainant himself intended to cancel the admission and did not want to move to Cyprus. It was also stated in the written version filed by the petitioner that on 20.2.2017, the complainant had come to their office and collected all the documents, including the passport and visa papers.
3. The District Forum having allowed the consumer complainant, the petitioner company approached the concerned State Commission by way of an appeal. The said appeal also having been dismissed, the petitioner is before this Commission by way of this revision petition.
4. It is not in dispute that the complainant had handed over his passport to the petitioner company. The only disputed question is as to whether the passport was returned to him by the petitioner company or not. The petitioner has placed on record the acknowledgement purporting to be given by the complainant on 20.2.2017 while receiving the original documents, including his original passport. The petitioner has also placed on record a copy of the DDR No.36 lodged by the complainant at a police station on 25.2.2017, stating therein that he had lost his passport at Sector 34 Chandigarh on 18.2.2017 and the same could not be traced out. The petitioner has also filed a copy of the GD No.20, wherein the complainant purportedly stated that the passport had been traced out at Immigration Office, Sector 34 Chandigarh and therefore he DDR lodged by him may be cancelled and a cancellation report may be issued to him.
5. Thus, not only the complainant executed an acknowledgement evidencing receipt of the original passport to him on 20.2.2017 he also lodged a DDR after five days, on 25.2.2017 stating therein that he had lost the passport at Sector 34, Chandigarh, though the date of passport was given by him is 18.2.2017, which could not possibly have been correct if the passport was obtained from the petitioner company only on 20.2.2017.
6. Moreover, the cancellation report lodged by the complainant himself on 02.3.2017 shows that the passport was traced from the Immigration Office Sector 34 Chandigarh, both the police report as well the acknowledgement purported to be executed by the complainant belie the case set out by him in the consumer complaint.
7. It is submitted by the learned counsel for the complainant that the acknowledgement was amongst several papers got executed by the petitioner from the complainant and DDR as well as the cancellation report were lodged by him on the advice of the petitioner company. When the submission was made, I asked the learned counsel for the complainant as to whether complainant had at any point of time sent a legal notice or even written a letter to the petitioner company alleging therein that the DDR and the cancellation report were lodged by him on at the behest of the petitioner. No such document however, could be pointed out by her.
8. I then asked the learned counsel for the complainant as to whether the complainant had made such an averment in the consumer complaint. Again, the learned counsel could not point out any such averment in the consumer complaint instituted before the District Forum. Had the DDR and cancellation report been lodged at the behest of the petitioner, the least the complainant would have done was to send a notice / letter to the petitioner before instituting the consumer complaint, stating therein that the said reports had been lodged by him at the behest of the petitioner and were factually incorrect. In that case, he would also have reiterated the same in the consumer complaint. That having not been done, the inevitable inference is that the passport had actually been taken by him from the office of the petitioner on 20.2.2017, and was either lost by him and later traced at Immigration Office Sector 34 Chandigarh or the passport was never lost in first place and remained with the complainant throughout after he had obtained the same from the petitioner com
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pany on 20.2.2017. In either situation, no deficiency on the part of the petitioner in rendering services to the complainant is made out. 9. For the reasons stated hereinabove, the orders passed by the fora below cannot be sustained, the same are hereby set aside. The consumer complaint is consequently dismissed with no order as to costs. 10. The amount, which the petitioner company had deposited with the District Forum, be released to the petitioner company, along with interest which have accrued on that amount.